Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2023-10
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2023-10
 
16 Jan 2023
16 Jan 2023
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

An Analysis of CMAQ Gas Phase Dry Deposition over North America Through Grid-Scale and Land-Use Specific Diagnostics in the Context of AQMEII4

Christian Hogrefe1, Jesse O. Bash1, Jonathan E. Pleim1, Donna B. Schwede1,, Robert C. Gilliam1, Kristen M. Foley1, Keith Wyat Appel1, and Rohit Mathur1 Christian Hogrefe et al.
  • 1Center for Environmental Measurement and Modeling, US Environmental Protection Agency, 109 T.W. Alexander Dr., RTP, NC 27711, USA
  • retired

Abstract. The fourth phase of the Air Quality Model Evaluation International Initiative (AQMEII4) is conducting a diagnostic intercomparison and evaluation of deposition simulated by regional-scale air quality models over North America and Europe. In this study, we analyze annual AQMEII4 simulations performed with the Community Multiscale Air Quality Model (CMAQ) version 5.3.1 over North America. These simulations were configured with both the M3Dry and Surface Tiled Aerosol and Gas Exchange (STAGE) dry deposition schemes available in CMAQ. A comparison of observed and modeled concentrations and wet deposition fluxes shows that the AQMEII4 CMAQ simulations perform similarly to other contemporary regional-scale modeling studies. During summer, M3Dry has higher ozone (O3) deposition velocities (Vd) and lower mixing ratios than STAGE for much of the eastern U.S. while the reverse is the case over eastern Canada and along the West Coast. In contrast, during winter STAGE has higher O3 Vd and lower mixing ratios than M3Dry over most of the southern half of the modeling domain while the reverse is the case for much of the northern U.S. and southern Canada. Analysis of the diagnostic variables defined for the AQMEII4 project, i.e. grid-scale and land-use (LU) specific effective conductances and deposition fluxes for the major dry deposition pathways, reveals generally higher summertime stomatal and wintertime cuticular grid-scale effective conductances for M3Dry and generally higher soil grid-scale effective conductances (for both vegetated and bare soil) for STAGE in both summer and winter. On a domain-wide basis, the stomatal grid-scale effective conductances account for about half of the total O3 Vd during daytime hours in summer for both schemes. Employing LU-specific diagnostics, results show that daytime Vd varies by a factor of 2 between LU categories. Furthermore, M3Dry vs. STAGE differences are most pronounced for the stomatal and vegetated soil pathway for the forest LU categories, with M3Dry estimating larger effective conductances for the stomatal pathway and STAGE estimating larger effective conductances for the vegetated soil pathway for these LU categories. Annual domain total O3 deposition fluxes differ only slightly between M3Dry (74.4 Tg/year) and STAGE (76.2 Tg/yr), but pathway-specific fluxes to individual LU types can vary more substantially on both annual and seasonal scales which would affect estimates of O3 damages to sensitive vegetation. A comparison of two simulations differing only in their LU classification scheme shows that the differences in LU cause seasonal mean O3 mixing ratio differences on the order of 1 ppb across large portions of the domain, with the differences generally largest during summer and in areas characterized by the largest differences in the fractional coverages of the forest, planted/cultivated, and grassland LU categories. These differences are generally smaller than the M3Dry vs. STAGE differences outside the summer season but have a similar magnitude during summer. Results indicate that the deposition impacts of LU differences are caused both by differences in the fractional coverages and spatial distributions of different LU categories as well as the characterization of these categories through variables like surface roughness and vegetation fraction in look-up tables used in the land-surface model and deposition schemes. Overall, the analyses and results presented in this study illustrate how the diagnostic grid-scale and LU-specific dry deposition variables adopted for AQMEII4 can provide insights into similarities and differences between the CMAQ M3Dry and STAGE dry deposition schemes that affect simulated pollutant budgets and ecosystem impacts from atmospheric pollution.

Christian Hogrefe et al.

Status: open (until 27 Feb 2023)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse

Christian Hogrefe et al.

Model code and software

CMAQv5.3.1 Model Code U.S. Environmental Protection Agency https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.3585898

Christian Hogrefe et al.

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Short summary
Under the umbrella of the fourth phase of the Air Quality Model Evaluation International Initiative (AQMEII4), this study applies AQMEII4 diagnostic tools to better characterize how dry deposition removes pollutants from the atmosphere in the widely used CMAQ model. The results illustrate how these tools can provide insights into similarities and differences between the two CMAQ dry deposition options that affect simulated pollutant budgets and ecosystem impacts from atmospheric pollution.
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